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What does the local market for cinemas look like?

Saudis arrive to watch Saudi short movies during the "Short Film Competition 2" festival, in this October 20, 2017 photo, at King Fahad Culture Center in Riyadh. (AFP) JEDDAH: Shockingly, as many as 35,000 Saudis travel daily to neighboring Bahrain where they spend an average of SR1,200 ($320) per day on watching movies. In a study conducted by cinemas in Bahrain back in 2011, it was revealed that 93 percent of their audience is Saudis. Media studies show that cinemas in Saudi Arabia can secure a sizable market with annual profits up to SR1 billion. Currently, up to 86 percent of the Saudi population watches movies on TV, while 49 percent watch their films on Internet sites such as Netflix. Although the concept of "going to the cinema" is almost alien to young Saudis, speculations can be made when it comes to ticket prices. A single ticket can cost between SR30-45 in comparison to other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries such as the UAE and Bahrain. Even before they had a local platform, Saudi filmmakers managed to leave an imprint on the market screening up to 60 films this year. Wadjda, a 2013 film directed by Haifaa Al-Mansour, was the first Saudi film to be submitted for an Academy Award, though it was not nominated.

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Publication:Arab News (Jeddah, Saudi Arabia)
Geographic Code:7BAHR
Date:Dec 13, 2017
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